Syllabus: February 14th

A list of interesting things new and old that I’ve read or experienced this week. I do not endorse or even necessarily agree with anything on the other side of these links.

Articles

Adegbuyi, Fadeke. “LinkedIn’s Alternate Universe: How the professional platform makes networking weird.” Every.to. https://every.to/divinations/linkedins-alternate-universe-21780381 — Adegbuyi says what we’ve all been thinking: LinkedIn is weird.


Evans, Benedict. “Retail, Rent, and Things that Don’t Scale.” https://www.ben-evans.com/benedictevans/2021/2/6/things-that-dont-scale — Evans offers some interesting thoughts on the retail experience and, as a result, challenges readers to stop thinking of Amazon as a sort of indomitable dragon.

Ford, Paul. “The Secret, Essential Geography of the Office.” Wired. https://www.wired.com/story/the-secret-essential-geography-of-the-office — What makes a successful essay? One thing you can do is take something commonplace, like the office, and make us see it in a new way. Consider the passage: “I think of those as ‘weeping paths,’ part of the secret map of every office. You cannot sob at your desk, so you must go on a journey, smiling at the floor, until you find a place where emotion can flow.“Litvinenko, Yuri.

“Windows’ Little Brother, Bearer of Microsoft’s Grand Ambitions.” 30pin. https://www.30pin.com/features/windows-ce-history/Perhaps you think that a history of Windows CE couldn’t possibly be interesting. Think again. This article sheds even more light on how Microsoft’s total dedication to the Windows brand between around 2002 to around 2010 seriously damaged the company’s ability to execute anything else.

Lowe, Katie. “The Rise of the Digital Gothic.” CrimeReads. https://crimereads.com/the-rise-of-the-digital-gothic/ — A thought-provoking critical perspective from an unexpected place. Perhaps, by placing us in constant contact with the many ghostly presences of capital, technology is hastening the end of the end of history.

Rizvic, Sejla. “Everybody Hates Millennials: Gen Z and the Tiktok Generation Wars.” The Walrus. https://thewalrus.ca/everybody-hates-millennials-gen-z-and-the-tiktok-generation-wars/ — Just to be clear, generational discourse is bullshit. But since we’re surrounded by people who believe in it, and then act on that belief, articles like this one are necessary. Roy, Sumana. “The Problem with the Postcolonial Syllabus.” The Chronicle of Higher Education. https://www.chronicle.com/article/the-problem-with-the-postcolonial-syllabus — Roy asks, what’s the matter with merely taking pleasure in novels? Why must novels written by authors living in “postcolonial” settings impart some sort of moral or offer some deep criticism?

Videos

The Little Things.

Music

Death by Unga Bunga. Heavy Male Insecurity.

Various Artists. Cuba: Music and Revolution: Experiments in Latin Music, 1975-1985. https://soundsoftheuniverse.com/sjr/product/cuba-music-and-revolution

Art

Andrew Salgado. — https://www.instagram.com/andrew.salgado.art/

Roadsworth. http://www.roadsworth.com/

Takram. “Moriota Shoten.” http://www.takram.com/projects/a-single-room-with-a-single-book-morioka-shoten/ — profile of a unique bookstore in Japan which sells one book at a time. Benedict Evans discusses this store in his article above.

Books

Coupland, Douglas. Bit Rot: Stories & Essays. New York: Blue Rider Press, 2016.

Cory, Cynie. Here on Rue Morgue Avenue. Tallahassee, Fla.: Hysterical Books, 2018.

See you next week! (Or, you could keep an eye out for more writing, photos, art, and other stuff here during the week)…

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